I jolt out of my daze as the car lurches over an unexpected pothole in the road.
It has been a long, uneventful trip--the grass moves by in one indistinct blur and puffs of white cloud drift lonesomely through an unchanging sky. The time I've spent in the car seems to get longer as I think about it, as if to mock me; and my eagerness to reach my destination only swells.
But as I look at a patch of trees quickly approaching me, I notice how each one is different: each of their branches is different, and their gentle swinging in the wind all seems to go to a unique beat. I wonder, if they had eyes, what they would have seen. Would each knot in their trunk represent a poor family passing them by, hoping for a better life in the Wild West? Is each kink in their arms a reminder of a dreadful storm?
Suddenly, the sky darkens, and I imagine a single torchlight flickering in the midst of the darkness as a company of knights from a faraway land seeks fortune in a strange land. I picture wagons on a dirt path full of settlers yearning to breathe the free air of unexplored territories. I see farmers tilling cotton, corn, and wheat, preparing to take their goods to the market in the morning.
All of the sudden, the boredom and the destination become very faint, distant ideas; for I have diverged from the path of reality and taken the wondrous road of imagination into realms unknown. Reality often blinds us to beauty; let us instead be like children and see the wonder around us all the time.
You may not have known it, but robots are hot at this year's Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea (one even held the Olympic torch at one point). With robots on the rise around the world, it was only a matter of time before we had a robotic Olympics.
And it's actually quite adorable.
Far from the menaces mainstream culture has made them to be, some cute little bots hit the slopes at the Welli Hilli Ski Resort about an hour outside Pyeongchang earlier this week. Robots from eight different robotics teams were programmed and designed to move like their human counterparts and get the fastest time. Some robots succeeded in this goal, and some fell a bit short. Take a look:
What a laugh can do to turn a sour day sweet!
Tell me, why do we waste such time feeling pity on ourselves, or feeling embarrassed, or worrying about what others' thoughts are of us? Why do we dwell on what we don't have, when, if nothing else, we've been blessed with life? Why do we grasp for joy and yet joy's best expression has been placed inside us already?
A laugh is as strong as an ox to lift a burden, yet as delicate as a mother's touch to bring hope to the darkest of times--and what light a smile can bring to the gloom of an impending storm! Just as the moon brings light to the night and the lightning brings a glimmer in the rain, so does a laugh to hard times.
Don't despair, friend. All of us get stuck in the trap of sadness and hopelessness. But I plead with you, do not bottle up your laughter. Be struck with the wonder of the world again. Grin at silly faces in the mirror; chuckle at that puppy just learning to run; giggle at the baby trying to talk; snicker at the innocent wonderings of a child.
The world desperately needs your beautiful laughter at the joy you've found in the everyday things.
Unless you've been living under a Star Wars rock, you've either heard of or seen the long-awaited trailer for Solo: A Star Wars Story that premiered on Good Morning America this morning. In case you haven't seen it already, here it is:
I'm not going to do a full breakdown today, but I am going to go over what looks good, what looks bad, and what remains to be seen from this trailer. Let's dive in!
1) DONALD GLOVER AS LANDO! All right, I know...we haven't quite seen much of Lando in the brief clips we have been currently given to feast on, but knowing Glover's success in other movies, it seems like he's going to do just fine as Lando. Plus, this GIF just exudes the character to me:
2) The visuals. Granted, this is pretty much a given for any Star Wars movie, and even the harshest critics of The Last Jedi had to praise the special effects. However, I loved several of the shots in the teasers so far, such as the Falcon-TIE Fighter chase. Also, the film seems to have a darker tone that seems suitable to the titular character. My absolute favorite clip, though, is this one:
3) New info about Han's life before A New Hope. We already knew this to some extent before we got the trailer, but the trailer raised another interesting fact about Han: apparently he was in the Imperial flight academy for some period of time before getting "kicked out." Something could have happened here that made him hate the Empire or the Empire hate him (though I suspect the latter, knowing Han).
Have you ever stopped to think about the little things?
Have you ever stopped to stare at the eerie blue glow of the distant moon through the trees? Have you ever admired the twinkling of the stars, the pictures they have painted in the sky? What of the dance of the pine trees in the wind or of the colorful clouds stippled in the sunset?
Or should we forget the yearning song of one bird to another, or the glitter of the dew in the grass, or the way the fog lays down to sleep on the earth in the early morning? Should we not remember the tender embrace of our beloved family, or the comfort of our pets under our arms?
And isn't it right that we should look at a picture frame and remember all the memory that is attached to it, or to see all the gifts we've been given and recall our good friendships? Might we look into the rain and see sunshine coming behind it--look into the darkness of the storm and see the lightning that is a glimpse of the light that is to come?
I think we often lie in wait for the "next big thing" when we might find more joy in the little things along the way. Was not this path called life laid before us on purpose? It is not a barren path, I say; it was a path meant for our long journey into the next life. Upon it has been laid the flowers that adorn themselves with colors unmatched; upon it has been laid the refreshing sight of a new sunrise; upon it has been laid all the small joys that our eyes so often pass over.
Keep moving forward, friend; but don't neglect to pick up the beauty that has been laid at your feet.
I'm a sci-fi/fantasy lover & writer who especially likes talking about Star Wars and futuristic tech. I like finding new things & finding the beauty in old things, especially in my "Everyday Snippets" series. I hope you'll join me on my blog and unleash your imagination!